LETTER: Right to complain - but ours is even worse

Alex Kirby rightly complains about ticket machines at Lewes station, but maybe he should count his blessings.

At least the station is always manned, has a ticket office that is often open and one ticket vending machine that functions reasonably well.

In contrast, Cooksbridge is an unmanned station and we have to depend upon one hopelessly unreliable machine.

Most recently the machine has taken a payment of £125 but failed to issue a ticket necessitating the purchase of a second ticket on the train, a further dialogue at Victoria Station, followed by the need to reclaim online.

This is not an isolated incident; we have logged 75 problems since October 2013.

Despite two formal complaints to Govia Thameslink CEO, Charles Horton, (with a third in the post), we continue to be fobbed off with futile attempts by Southern staff to firefight problems as they arise on a machine that is clearly not fit for purpose.

We had hoped that the award of the new franchise would see the release of much-needed investment funds, in our case for the purchase of a state of the art, all-weather vending machine.

We shall keep pressing. In the meantime we share Mr Kirby’s – and in seems most users’ – intense frustration with the dire customer service currently offered by GTR Southern.

Kevin Froude

Secretary, Cooksbridge Station Partnership

Swallow Cottage, Offham